January 29, 2013

Is the BlackBerry 10 a RIM-saver?

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Written by: Recultured Team
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In a few short hours, RIM will be showing its newest mobile platform in the smartphone market: BB10. The Waterloo company has delayed the launch of its last-ditch effort to regain composure among the tech giants since the second quarter of 2012. This time, however, after being teased incessantly with sneak previews of the new platform and hardware, we will finally see the unveiling of RIM’s last, latest and greatest offering. The big question still remains: will it garner enough impact and start a momentum change in the mobile phone industry? Or will RIM’s baby be forever forgotten? Will BB10 be a RIM-breaker or a RIM-saver?


The OS

BlackBerry’s OS hasn’t changed much since its fifth iteration: the same icons still dominate the home screen, and user experience never became interesting with the plain text menus and complex system management applications. Add to that the eternal boot-up screen after pulling out the battery, users will have to wait significantly longer to be able to use the phone. Coming from a more intuitive phone operating system, I found that the BlackBerry had too little ‘oomph’ for its attractiveness. Still my iPhone was able to do what my BlackBerry does, only much more pleasing to the eye.

However, BlackBerry’s forte comes from a business and productivity standpoint. BlackBerries get things done without the garish bells and whistles as iOS or Android phones do. BlackBerry smartphones are smart for this reason: they are phones, not toys. Whether seeing a push email notification, or the ever-reliable LED notification light blink, we know that the BlackBerry just works efficiently. And with BB OS 10’s updates to software such as BlackBerry Balance, BlackBerry Flow and BlackBerry Peek, productivity and fun will be separated yet seamlessly integrated.



If there is anything more annoying than an endless torrential cold rain in Vancouver, it’s using a touch screen phone with gloves on. Imagine tapping away countless emails and text messages on a touch screen, always half-guessing the next letter, with fancy algorithms and software doing the never infallible autocorrect software. RIM’s BB 10 developer alpha units all sport a touch screen, taking away from the traditional pleasant hardware keyboard on the BlackBerry smartphones. This will be an interesting turnaround for RIM, as the keyboard has always been its greatest selling strength in the competition. On the other hand, there is no doubt that BlackBerry handsets can take a beating. I have seen numerous iPhones shatter into shards from waist-level drops; I still have yet to see a BlackBerry phone do the same.

The Bold 9900: BlackBerry's flagship from 2011.

BlackBerry may have been a little feeble in terms of software, but they do build their phones to be tough.


BlackBerry People

RIM’s CEO, Thorsten Heins, claimed that BlackBerry users are connected more than anyone else in the smartphone market, and hence dubs them the BlackBerry people. A few years back, there would be more than 60% of smartphone users that could be called such. Nowadays, there still remains some 4.0% of US smartphone users with this appellation. Will this small faithful crowd remain faithful to the struggling platform? Or with the advent of BB 10, will there be more fledgling BlackBerry people flooding the fast-paced smartphone market? Facing the competition with well-established platforms, will BlackBerry 10 gain enough composure to persuade the rest of the market to turn away from their old devices and ride the newly refurbished BB10 caravan?

RIM has pulled its last strings in its enterprise: it would be astounding if we see a rebirth in this struggling company with BB10’s release. With BlackBerry’s strong, productivity-centred operating system, its reliable hardware, and its small, but faithful following, we can only wait and see how the unveiling elicits wows or boos from the audience.

Could these be the new phones RIM unveils soon?


About the Author

Recultured Team
Recultured Team
This is where you'll find the blog posts that the team has contributed to collectively! What team? Wildcats! -Nope, wrong team. Recultured!

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